John G. Patton was a missionary based in the New Hebrides Islands with his wife and children. One night, hostile natives surrounded the mission station, determined to murder him and his family. First they planned to burn them out, and then they intended to kill them. Throughout that terror-filled night, Patton and his wife prayed that God would deliver them. And when daylight came, they were surprised to find their attackers had left.
A year later, the chief of the tribe that had intended to kill the Pattons became a Christian. So Patton asked the chief what happened on the night they had planned on killing them and why they turned back.
The chief said, “Who were all those men you had with you there?”
Patton knew of no men who were with him. The chief went on to explain how they saw hundreds of big men in shining garments around the mission station, so they were afraid to attack.
Could this be a modern-day example of angelic protection in the life of a Christian? Quite possibly. Certainly the Bible teaches that angels were involved in the lives of God’s people and continue to be involved to this present day.
Psalm 34:7 gives us this great promise: “The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him, and delivers them.” And Hebrews 1:14, describing angels, says, “Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?”
In other words, God is saying that He has sent His angels to minister to us as believers. He has sent them to protect us and, when we are in a difficult situation, to even deliver us. And when that day comes for us to go and meet the Lord, they will usher us into the presence of God.
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